Research Topic

Plant Responses to the Dark Scenario

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About this Research Topic

Light is one of the most important environmental factors, which is required for optimal plant growth and development. Thanks to rhythmic changes in light/dark phases, circadian clock has been evolved in the living organism to synchronize internal processes. Circadian clock and light are an integral part of ...

Light is one of the most important environmental factors, which is required for optimal plant growth and development. Thanks to rhythmic changes in light/dark phases, circadian clock has been evolved in the living organism to synchronize internal processes. Circadian clock and light are an integral part of the whole plant life as well as plays a crucial role in defense regulation. Although most of the scientific data are coming from the light phase of plant life, the importance of the dark phase is also unquestionable.

Not only the night but also fluctuations, disturbance and availability of light, shade or absence of light (e.g. prolonged darkness) may significantly alter the light-dependent redox status and plant hormones signalling may also induce new defense mechanisms and/or new associated molecular, physiological, metabolic or novel tolerance mechanisms in plants. In addition, dark condition mediates plant growth and development positively/negatively under biotic and abiotic stress responses of plants.

Numerous molecular and physiological changes have been described in several plant species but in many aspects and regulation pathways of plant responses to dark still remained undiscovered and unanswered. The present Research Topic will provide an insight into the new finding/opinions to improve the understanding and to solve important problems in current plant biology as well as in agriculture to increase the yield potential and stress tolerance under today’s changing environment to dark.

In this Research Topic, we welcome Reviews, Perspective, Original Research, Opinions, and Methods to highlight recent exciting progress on the understanding of systems biology, molecular, physiological and biochemical responses of plants to dark. We aim to focus on the following topics:

1. Signalling in the dark (redox signalling, hormonal signalling or crosstalk)
2. Diurnal and circadian regulation (light/dark transition, dark/light transition)
3. Germination, growth and development in the dark (skotomorphogenesis)
4. Dark induced senescence and ripening physiology in the dark
5. Shade avoidance and defense mechanisms
6. Cold stress and chilling tolerance mechanisms in the dark
7. Heat stress tolerance mechanisms in the dark
8. Biotic stress, plant defense responses and plant protection in the dark
9. Comparative analyses of dark and light adopted conditions revealing general and/or specific mechanisms under optimal or stressful environments
10. Genetic engineering and genome editing for dark-adapted responses


Keywords: circadian regulation, shade avoidance, signalling in the dark, skotomorphogenesis, stress responses


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